“In politics, nothing is contemptible.” – Benjamin Disraeli
Living as I do in the battlefield state of Ohio, my recent brief forays into television have left me more than a little disgusted with the current crop of political ads. While I’m fully aware that complicated issues can’t be intelligently discussed over the course of a 15 to 30 second ad spot, by what I’ve seen I’m forced to conclude that apparently tomorrow’s elections aren’t about what the candidates stand for, but rather who they stand against. If I were to judge our government solely by the information contained in these spots, every single individual running for (or attempting to hold onto their) office is slightly less worthy of the job than the haggard woman who pushes her shopping cart down Route 250 screaming about how it’s raining on her furniture. At least I know she can’t be bought.
The Washington Post has a decent (if wholly incomplete) list of the kind of ads that are sandwiched between TV promos and cellphone pitches. Neither party is without guilt in the practice of mudslinging and scare mongering, but the Republican Party seems to have opted for a ‘in for a penny, in for a pound’ approach. Slate magazine has compiled a Political Ad Slime Awards list for this highly contentious political season, and it’s certainly an interesting foray into the world of moral absolutes, us-vs-them mentality, and downright juvenile mudslinging.
All in all, I’m beginning to think that penciling in ‘Gregory Peck’ for every ballot might just be my best course.
(Illustration by Kaebel Hashitani)
On a completely unrelated note: I know I’ve been slack recently, and for that I wholeheartedly apologize. Life rudely intrudes upon Casa de Monkey, and it makes this labor of love rather difficult to maintain at times. I’d just like to publicly (and effusively) thank all of you for your continued readership during these hectic times, and I’d especially like to thank those of you who’ve contributed submissions to this humble blog. Your contributions have been a lifesaver on many occasions, and I truly enjoy seeing the content through your perspectives. Thanks, and I’ll try my damnedest to keep things on a more even keel.